K701 VS. HD650 VS. Beyerdynamic DT990 - I tested them today
Aug 5, 2007 at 12:26 AM Post #16 of 47
I'm a student and my budget is tight^^
What do you think about getting the Alien USB DAC and the DarkVoice 336i?
would that be an option?
Aug 5, 2007 at 12:35 AM Post #17 of 47
Never heard it, but the alien DAC and Darkvoice would cost more than the move's price of $240.
Is mobility and versatility a concern for you?
I'm also a student and travel quite a bit. Hence I opted on the move for $240 and the k701 for $260, total = $500. I also use the move with my ipod hence I added in the "versatility" part.

BTW, the move is a DAC and AMP in one.

Look in the FS forum for the move....there's one right now FS.

I'm sure the alien DAC and darkvoice would sound great but again, I have never heard it.
Aug 5, 2007 at 12:50 AM Post #18 of 47
Ahhhh I thought the Corda Move cost that much^^
Now I checked it out and I see that it would fit good in my budget, I'd even have some more money to buy CD's.
If I find someone to confirm that the Darkvoice/Alien stuff works fine with the AKG and if I get 50% off for the K 701 (The Tango teacher of my parents worked for AKG for many years, so there's a chance I get them really cheap) I'd go with the Darkvoice because I don't mind not being able to move and I don't want to use the AKG's at school. (I'm not one of those posers running around like that
and telling everyone how much they cost and asking if they wanna try them out)
Aug 5, 2007 at 1:03 AM Post #19 of 47
It seems like the HD650s and K701s are getting a bit more popular around here for rock. If you like the K701, then the Grados wouldnt seem suiting to you, dont even come close to the HD650s or K701 in bass.
Aug 5, 2007 at 1:53 AM Post #20 of 47
I owned the 701 for a while...actually listened to it with a Dynalo and Zhaolu DAC. Scary details! You could hear things that made it seem like someone was in the room with you.
I quite enjoyed it with metal...sounded fantastic. But, alas, I needed a closed can so I wouldn't disturb the wife and kids which is why I switched to the Denons. I know there are a lot of folks who will disagree, but I thought the K701 was VERY suited to metal...especially symphonic and/or melodic death metal. As I said earlier, I'm really enjoying my new HD650 with metal, but I think I will end up returning them when I get my recabled Denons back. If I were to go with an open can again and my choices were the K701 or HD650, I would go with the K701 hands down...especially with a warm amp or source.
Aug 5, 2007 at 3:30 AM Post #21 of 47
Good topic and posts. Information was timely as I too am looking into the 701.
Aug 5, 2007 at 6:33 PM Post #22 of 47
A few days ago, I recieved my AKG K701. I'm used to Grado GS1000, but after playing the AKG's for about 40 hours, the Grados were send back in their carton.

WOW ! The AKG K701 is just my kind of headphone. They just got the sound I've been searching for. The midrange is almost as my old Sennheiser Unipolar 2002 electrostatic headphones; neutral and detailed. Treble is clear, but not so harsh as with my Grados. Bass is tight, but at the same time neutral. If deep bass is present on the recording, it will be played. Otherwise not. My Sennheiser HD650 play very deep bass almost every time bass is present, but its not as natural as when presented from the AKG's. Soundstage is huge from the AKG's. Grado GS1000 also got nice soundstage, but not quite as good / wide as the K701.

One of the best things I discovered, when switching from Grado GS1000 to AKG K701, is female voices. They are much better with the AKG's. Powerfull yet detailed and "pleasant". Your ears will never get tired from listening to female voices from the AKG K701.

Just my experience with AKG K701, after 40 hours of "burn in". I was told that burn in can take 100 or even 300 hours ?! Well, I'll probably hear the difference. The sound changed a lot for the first 40 hours; it simply gets better and better.
Aug 5, 2007 at 8:18 PM Post #23 of 47
I wrote this up a while back but never got around to posting it. It's pro k701 for rock so it's sorta suitable.


These are my subjective perceptions.


Headroom Desktop Amp w/ USB DAC (Cirrus Logic CS4398)
EMU 0404 (Stock)

Headroom Desktop Amp
MisterX Millett Hybrid

Sennheiser 595
AKG K701
Ultrasone HFI-650 Trackmaster
Beyerdynamic DT 990 (new, not burned in)

55Hz-220Hz increased 1-3db to bring bass to life.


Choosing a Rock Headphone Setup

Killswitch Engage Reject Yourself

USB DAC + Headroom Desktop Amp + 595
  1. Vocals slightly distant.
  2. Presentation is forward (in my face), not much soundstage.
  3. Not much instrument separation.
  4. Sounds good overall.
Arbitrary score: 7
EMU 0404 + Headroom Desktop Amp + 595
  1. Guitar sounds more pleasing now, less harsh sounding.
  2. Less soundstage, but sound more smooth now.
  3. Less sparkle in the highs
  4. More forgiving sound, less detail.
Arbitrary score: 7.5
USB DAC + Millett Hybrid + 595
  1. Similar smooth sound, but with more sparkle up high.
  2. Very pleasing!
  3. Still good amount of detail without sounding harsh.
  4. Instrument separation improved?
  5. Pretty darn rockin!
  6. Good bass impact
  7. Sound is fatiguing
Arbitrary score: 8
USB DAC + Millett Hybrid + K701
  1. Much less forward sounding
  2. Instruments sound further away, smaller
  3. Soundstage more obvious
  4. Less fatiguing sound
  5. Less impact all across the board
  6. Highs sounds great
Arbitrary score: 8
USB DAC + Millett Hybrid + DT 990
  1. Mids very recessed.
  2. Spacious sound
  3. Very bright, artificial high end
  4. Vocals sound very far away
  5. Sibilant
  6. Cymbals really stand out
Arbitrary score: 5
USB DAC + Millett Hybrid + HFI-650
  1. Very different sound.
  2. Veiled sound, like something is missing, but detailed.
Arbitrary score: 5
Rock Showdown

USB DAC + Millett Hybrid + K701
USB DAC + Millett Hybrid + 595

Boston More than a Feeling
Winner: 595
Opeth Ghost of Perdition
Winner: 595
Katatonia July
Winner: K701
Guns n Roses Dont Damn Me
Winner: 595

Im sure it will be a surprise some that the K701 made it to a showdown with the 595. Truth be told both sound great for rock. Ive auditioned RS1s and they (and the whole Grado line) don't suit my tastes.

Choosing a Not Rock Headphone Setup

Andy McKee Shanghai

USB DAC + Millett Hybrid + 595
  1. Very balanced sound
  2. Somewhat forward
  3. Sounds believable
Arbitrary score: 7
USB DAC + Millett Hybrid + DT 990
  1. Highs intolerable in this recording for this can
  2. Sounds more spacious than the 595
  3. Big Hall type sound, somewhat unnatural
  4. Otherwise sounds good
Arbitrary score: 6
USB DAC + Millett Hybrid + HFI-650
  1. Sounds more natural than 990, not as spacious
  2. Balanced sound, but veiled
Arbitrary score: 6
USB DAC + Millett Hybrid + K701
  1. Spacious sound, but not exaggerated like 990
  2. Highs pleasing
  3. Sounds natural
Arbitrary score: 8

Aug 5, 2007 at 11:25 PM Post #24 of 47
It pays to try them yourself. If you cannot find a place that has the headphones you want to buy, make sure you can return the ones you do not like.
Mar 17, 2008 at 1:48 AM Post #26 of 47

Originally Posted by cactus_farmer /img/forum/go_quote.gif
...Yeah, I really don't get why people will tell you: beyers/grado for rock, akg for classical, sennheisers for electro - or whatever - surely any can can do any genre?

IME I use Grados for rock and AKG for electro and acoustic/classical/live. The AKGs sound very neutral and real, which is obviously great for acoustic and classical, but surprisingly good for techno as well. They help tone down the bass and the size of the soundstage makes techno sound incredible. With some rock (Pink Floyd, The Gathering, Massive Attack), the Grados just sound more fun. With the AKG all the detail becomes distracting with "Wall of Sound" recordings and they end up not being very musical. Some recordings become almost too detailed and I hear things I don't want to. The Grados are a bit bassier and "funner", so rock is much more enjoyable.
As an only headphone for all genres I would take the K701 without a doubt though. While the Grados are more fun for rock, the K701s are the phones that make my jaw drop.
Mar 17, 2008 at 1:55 AM Post #27 of 47
Wow, an old thread get resurrected a week before Easter. Oh well, I'll pile on saying the 701 are good for all music. If you like the 701s you'll also like the Ultimate Ears Triple.fi 10 Pro IEMs. They seem cut of the same cloth (accurate sound) although they're totally different designs.

Mar 17, 2008 at 11:01 AM Post #28 of 47
Yep, K701 is great for everything IMO. But then, I'm not fussy. As far as I'm concerned, so is the HD280.

But *not* the HD650! I tried to enjoy those for 2 weeks, but just couldn't. Maybe I am fussy after all.
Mar 17, 2008 at 11:17 AM Post #30 of 47
I was just thinking how my re-cabled 701's had come good playing the Crystal Method, but on a couple of seriously low base notes in a few other tracks there was something missing.

But holy crap! Jazz! Guitar drums and bass, I can't get enough!

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